This Star Wars engagement album showcases 501st Legion members as Captain Rex and Bo-Katan.
After first photographing this couple in my studio, I suggested that I photograph this couple in costume using the same tried-and-true techniques I use when photographing all engaged couples.
I felt that by using that technique, I'd be able create compelling and unique photographs that would make for an amazing album worthy of entry into international photographic competitions.
With that one goal in mind, I developed a shot list detailing over 80 different concepts that I wanted to cover and I invested several hundred of dollars of my own money into Star Wars related toys and props.
When the day for the session finally arrived, time and fading light were against us and I was only able to create a fraction of the photos I had planned. Nevertheless, I made over 500 images in just a little over an hour.
Later, when I returned to my studio and began the album design, my preliminary draft included over 80 pages. That was far too long for this project, so I refined the story and only selected the strongest photos, I settled on the photographs that you see before you—a 40-page album that contains only 23 photos. Less is more; that's my motto for album design.
These costumes are amazing because my subjects are members of the 501st Legion, a worldwide Star Wars costuming organization comprised of and operated by Star Wars fans—also known as cosplayers.
While the 501st Legion is not sponsored by Lucasfilm Ltd., it's Lucasfilm's preferred Imperial costuming group. Star Wars, its characters, costumes, and all associated items are the intellectual property of Lucasfilm. Lucasfilm Ltd. & ™ All rights reserved. Used under authorization.
Captain Rex and Bo-Katan are characters that appear in the animated television series, Star Wars: The Clone Wars. The series, created by George Lucas and produced by Lucasfilm Animation, debuted on October 3, 2008.
The animated series features a prequel storyline surrounding Jedi Knight Anakin Skywalker and his path to become Sith Lord Darth Vader. During the series, the Clone Wars are just beginning and the Galactic Republic and Jedi Order are under siege from the Confederacy of Independent Systems.
The character Bo-Katan is a confident, fierce, and brave female warrior who is able to withstand heavy physical punishment and who is pleasantly plain-spoken. The Bo-Katan character was primarily created to give female fans more opportunities for armored cosplay. The pronunciation of her name is similar to the pronunciation of Boca Raton.
The character Captain Rex is one of the many clones of bounty hunter Jango Fett. These clone soldiers were bred to fight against the Confederacy of Independent Systems. Rex has served in command roles within the famous 501st Legion and was assigned to Jedi General Anakin Skywalker, participating in missions both separately and alongside the Jedi Knight.
For additional flavor and character, Rex has a scar on his chin that is modeled after the one on Harrison Ford's. Captain Rex, believes strongly in his humanity and the humanity of his fellow clones. And although he doesn't hesitate to follow great leaders into battle, he reacts violently when he feels that his men are treated inhumanely.
This album was entered in the WPPI Print, Album & Filmmaker Competition. It awarded First Place in the Engagement Album category, receiving a Gold Distinction Award with an unexpected score of 95. At the time, this score was the highest that I'd ever received in any competition.
For this competition, there were a total of 2544 entries with 32% of those entries receiving an award. To put these awards in perspective, 8 entries received a Platinum Award. A Platinum Award is presented to entrants with a perfect score of 100.
A Gold Distinction Award was presented for this album entry along with only 12 other entries in other competition categories. Gold Distinction awards are presented to entries that receive a score of 95 to 99 which in this case represent only .005% of all entries.
Other awards presented at this competition include 49 gold awards [2% of entries scored 90-94], 170 silver distinction awards [7% of entries scored 85-89], and 581 silver awards [23% of entries scored 80-84].
I'd like to thank the many people who helped made this album possible including Michael, Stacey, Dina, Jerry, Gretchen, and dozens of others who contributed constructive and worthwhile feedback during the development process.